22-year-old accused of kidnapping ex at gunpoint, leading police on chase in Tulare County

VISALIA, Calif. (KFSN) -- A 22-year-old man was arrested Sunday, accused of kidnapping his ex-girlfriend at gunpoint and leading police on a chase through Visalia and Tulare.

It started around 9 am on Sunday.

Officers first responded to 911 calls of shots being fired at a home near Noyes Street and Laurel Avenue. When they arrived, they found two cars hit by the gunfire. No one was injured.

During their investigation, detectives learned the house belonged to the new partner of 22-year-old Elijah Galaz's ex-girlfriend.

Investigators believed Galaz was the shooter and went out to arrest him.

About an hour later, while they searched for Galaz, officers received another 911 call from his ex-girlfriend, who said the 22-year-old was outside her house.

Detectives say Galaz forced the victim into his truck at gunpoint, and they drove off before officers arrived.

Police found the truck on Hall Street and Houston Avenue, but Galaz sped away as officers tried to pull him over.

Investigators chased him for several miles but lost track of him at the intersection of Encina and Oak.

They searched for the 22-year-old driver for a couple of hours, and around 1:30 pm learned Galaz might be in Tulare.

Tulare police officers found his truck in a neighborhood on Westminster Avenue. When they tried to pull him over, he sped away again.

Galaz led officers on a chase for a couple of miles until he crashed into a parked car on Colorado Avenue. The 22-year-old got out of the car and ran away.

A Tulare Police K9 officer found him and arrested him.

Galaz's ex-girlfriend suffered some minor injuries in the crash.

Officers booked Galaz into the Tulare County Pre-Trial Facility on several charges including, assault with a deadly weapon, kidnapping, felony hit and run.

If you are the victim of domestic abuse, or you know someone who is, there is help available 24/7. In Fresno County, call the Marjaree Mason Center at (559) 233-4357. In all other locations, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at (800) 799-7233.

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